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North Yorkshire Open Studios 2012, June 16 and 17
LOCKTON artist Sue Slack is just one of the local painters, sculptors, ceramists and other artists taking part in the second weekend of the North Yorkshire Open Studios, which takes place on Saturday and Sunday.
In Ryedale alone, there are a huge variety of artists and craftspeople with a whole range of skills and expertise, including ceramicists, painters, illustrators, artist blacksmiths, sculptors and jewellers.
Open Studios offers an opportunity to see these artists at work in their setting, with the tools of their trade surrounding them. It gives members of the public a one-off chance to talk to the artists and to discover what makes them tick and what influences the art that they do.
“I’ve been busy preparing new work for the show, which will include original paintings, giclee prints and greetings cards,” said Sue.
“My brightly-coloured landscapes are selling particularly well this year and I think I might have been helped by the recent popularity and publicity of David Hockney’s work. It has opened the public’s eyes to seeing landscape differently,” she added.
“Perhaps the brightly coloured landscapes also help to generate a degree of optimism in the current uncertain times.
“One lady, buying my work recently apparently commented, ‘Why buy a David Hockney when you can buy two Sue Slacks’,” she laughed.
For the first time this year, Sue and her fellow Ryedale artists will be opening their studios to the public by appointment during this week, before this weekend’s Open Studios event.
Among the 12 crafts workers featuring is architectural wrought iron blacksmith, Matthew Dwyer, whose workshop is in a former agricultural building at Stonegrave Lodge Farm, Stonegrave.
Matthew and his wife, Louise, a jeweller, run the Saltbox Gallery at Helmsley.
Also taking part is Catriona Stewart, who paints in oil and acrylic at her studio which is in the Highfield racing stables at Norton.
She says she combines abstract and representational styles to “express her imaginative response to the world around her”.
Other Ryedale craft workers taking part are Sylvia Holmes, of Chapel Farm, Thixendale, who makes dishes, cannisters and wall pieces; artist Julia Swift, also of Thixendale; Clare Belbin, who uses the transforming world of a walled garden and its trees for her artistic work; Susan Neale, a freelance illustrator; artist Jean Harlow, of the Sawmill Studios, Helmsley; artist Andrea Bailey of Main Street, Gillmoor; Elizabeth Bailey, an earthenware artist, also of Gillamoor; sculptor Jennifer Tetlow of Lastingham, and Janet Hayton, a ceramic specialist, of Appleton-le- Moors.
More than 130 artists all over North Yorkshire are opening their studios to the public. This year, there is also a series of exciting collaborations involving contemporary art and heritage, and locally, artists have created an installation in Helmsley Walled Garden, celebrating the unique qualities of the site.
For more details about the Open Studios weekend, visit www.nyos.org.uk or pick up a free catalogue at tourist information centres and other local venues.